Can you change a tyre?

Having two daughters I have written before how it can be all too easy to succumb to the pink sparkly stereotype of girliness. For whatever good it does I at least try to make sure they have a couple of cars and trains amongst their toys and that they dress up as pirates not just fairies. Yet I didn’t set them much of an example this week when they had to come with their dad to rescue me as I sat stranded with a flat tyre on the side of the motorway.
I was a total cliche from the moment my car first started to make an unusual noise, just turning the music up so I couldn’t hear it.
Even when it began to lose power, I kept hitting the accelerator thinking if I could just reach home everything would be ok. It was only when people started flashing me and I could smell smoke that I finally pulled into a layby and found my tyre ripped to shreds.
At first I thought my banger had had it, as after passing the 100,000 miles mark the old dear is about ready for her bus pass, so I was relieved to find it was just a tyre. At least I did manage to use the manual to get to the stage of jacking her up and trying to prise loose the wheel nuts, but I just couldn’t get them to budge.
But worse embarrassment was to come when I went to get a new tyre as the outside of my car looks like a Ferrari compared to the inside. When I saw the mechanic putting a plastic sheet on the seat I thought it was because he didn’t want to get grease on it. But then I realised he was actually pretty clean and I think he just thought it looked like a health hazard. Maybe he didn’t see the empty Haribo packets stuffed in the driver’s door that I pocketed out of the children’s party bags and ate myself. And I am sure he won’t have noticed the rotten apple core that I had been meaning to remove for the last few days or maybe a week, or the cheese sandwich crusts discarded on the floor of the backseats. But to my mortification he did see the opened tampon that my daughter had found in the glove compartment and as it kept her happy thinking it was mouse I had thought what the heck and let her keep playing with.
The one plus side of my tip of a car is that if I ever do break down with the children on board, at  least I could scrounge something edible or a long forgotten toy to play with buried somewhere under the seat.
However, this has been a wake up call. I have now practiced changing a wheel and cleaned out the inside and it looks semi-respectable. But I am not sure I should be let loose on the brake pads just yet.


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